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Haydn Divertimento No.1 arranged for Flute Quartet
NSM's latest publication is a delightful flute quartet arrangement of Haydn's Divertimento No.1 (Hob.II:21 in its original version for string quartet and 2 horns; Op.2 No.3 in the version for string quartet). The piece works nicely adapted for flute 1, flute 2, alto flute, and bass flute. Here's an excerpt from John W. Pratt's preface © April 21, 2021:
"Joseph Haydn ... is credited with developing the classical forms of both the string quartet and the symphony, starting from the loose structures and permissive instrumentation of Baroque instrumental music. … [His] first string quartets are his Opus 1 Nos. 1-4 and 6, and Opus 2 Nos. 1-6, thus eleven. Opus 1 No. 5 is somewhat later, added to make a set of 6, apparently a perfect number in music publication as well as in mathematics. Opus 2 Nos. 3 and 5 are quartet arrangements of two divertimentos including also two horns and listed in the Hoboken catalogue as II:21 and 22; they also were perhaps added with an eye to perfection. … The earliest quartets were probably (explore the sources at your peril) written in the late 1750s at the request of a sometime patron, Karl Joseph von Fürnberg, for three friends and Haydn himself to play.
The spirit and spiritedness of the two divertimentos suit them to flute quartet, as does the distribution of activity. In addition, a flute quartet combines the unified timbre of a string quartet with the wind sound of the horns, while the early string quartets do not exploit the string sound per se. Transposition up a step puts the cello and viola parts of Hob. II:21 mostly within the bass and alto flute ranges and makes the violin parts if anything more comfortable for C flutes. The arrangement here follows the scores of the divertimento Hob. II:21 and the quartet Op.2 No.3 available at imslp.org. The quartet arrangement is not by Haydn, but is essentially identical to the string parts of the divertimento except for the addition of three "variations"
Visit the NSM website for a preview page of the score and audio of the first movement: https://noteworthysheetmusic.com/
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